December 04, 2020

Expert: startup building costs in Russia dropped tenfold / TASS

It is caused by the development of contract engineering infrastructure and the manufacture of the first startup product batches

MOSCOW, December 4. /TASS/. The cost for the establishment of a technological startup in Russia from scratch has dropped, on the average, by ten times due to the development of proper contract infrastructure for the engineering and manufacture of the first startup product batches, as TASS was informed by the co-founder of the TechnoSpark Group of Companies (part of the investment network of the Fund for Infrastructure and Educational Programs of Rusnano) Denis Kovalevich on Friday.

“As we estimate if ten years ago the cost of building any material startup in the domain of robotics or medical engineering ranged from 1 to 3 billion rubles, getting a company to the same point today costs almost ten times less. This is what can be achieved with such contract infrastructure. Startups do not have to invest in their own production or divert to non-basic engineering works”, he said.

According to Denis Kovalevich, “only in seven years of its existence, in the middle of nowhere TechnoSpark managed to erect a campus which accommodates over 100 companies created for scratch”.

“TechnoSpark has developed a steady contract infrastructure for the engineering and manufacture of the first startup product batches. The facilities it offers are not collective use centres that require continuous feeding of subsidies and grants, but operationally sustainable contract companies”, remarked Kovalevich.

Future challenges for startups

According to the expert, the main challenge for the infrastructure companies are expected to face during the next ten years is the need for manifold increase of the labor productivity along with the growth of production volume.

“Such productivity growth will enable them to reach the most complex industrial segments and to learn manufacturing sophisticated technological products within a very limited time”, he said.

Kovalevich sees one of the options of developing such new technologies of the future in the establishment of the so-called “startup studios”.

“On one hand, the startup studios replace the early investment stage, when the money is raised from the investment of families and friends, from business angels and incubators. But most importantly, instead of support, they make companies themselves. As far as its production capacity is concerned, a startup studio is capable of establishing 100 startup in 10 years. In my opinion, a new generation of such studios may be created at some progressive universities and corporations”, the expert remarked.

According to Kovalevich, to supply the startups with sufficient labor resources, it is necessary to develop the “technology of diagnostics for the entrepreneurship talent in the people of Russia”.

“We need to take half a million people to such diagnostics to reveal at least 10 thousand new technological entrepreneurs. Then all startups will be supplied with human resources. Moreover, there is no doubt that Russian companies should improve their management quality to learn procuring new startups to discover new markets”, he said.

Experimental production

According to the expert, another way of developing startups in Russia is the creation of advanced experimental production capacities that would concentrate tens and hundreds of new startups around themselves in clusters.

“For example, around our new flexible electronics plant [at TechnoSpark] there appear new startups that focus on medical bandages with embedded electronics or bent screens for smart speakers. A part of these startups are built by us, and another is driven by outside technological entrepreneurs. Of course, the pivotal question for such experimental production sites is the scaling into large plants. It is impossible without investment of large Russian corporations interested in the expansion to the global markets”, explained Kovalevich.

Rusnano, JSC was created on the 11th of March, 2011, as a result of reorganization of Russian Corporation of Nanotechnologies established in 2007.. A part of the corporation assets became the bases of The Fund for Infrastructure and Educational Programs (FIEP) aimed at the development of the nanotechnology-specific innovation infrastructure.

Source: TASS

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